Saturday, July 28, 2012

Bead Soup Blog Hop

What a fun way to start off the weekend...
being a part of the 6th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party,  
hosted by Lori Anderson
(And sending her a big Thank You for all the work and effort
she put in to make this happen!)


There are almost 400 people from around the world
who are participating this year and you can find all their blogs here:
Bead Soup Blog Party People 2012


My jewelry was inspired by the pieces sent to me
by my Bead Soup partner, Cynthia.  Be sure to check out her amazing blog, 
Antiquity Travelers,
to see her creations using the components I sent her.


Cynthia generously sent me several pieces of sea glass from Cuba and a beautiful large pendant made from paua from New Zealand.  She also included quite a few paua chips and a stunning leaf toggle clasp.




I have to be honest...the biggest challenge was incorporating the toggle clasp into a design.  I didn't want to hide it away at the back of a necklace, but I tend to lose bracelets that have toggle clasps.


So I started out with designing a piece of jewelry using the sea glass because that's what I know the best.


I wanted to make several pieces with the various colors of sea glass, but because of the terrible storm that hit the East Coast several weeks ago (we lost power for 6 days and are still trying to clear away the branches and fallen trees), I just didn't have the time.


But I will be sure to post them as I get them designed and created!




I wasn't sure which piece of sea glass to use for the Blog Hop,
but because I wanted to challenge myself, I chose
a brown piece.  I tend to gravitate towards pastels and shades of blue,
so choosing the brown sea glass was going to force me
to move out of my comfort zone. 


So off I went to a local bead shop to find some seed beads
that would showcase my sea glass pendant.
  I'm not normally drawn to oranges, but when I saw
these iridescent orange drop beads, I knew
I had found the base color for my necklace.  I added
white pearl 8/0 beads and yellow/gold matte iridescent 11/0 beads
to complete the color palette. 


I chose to use the spiral rope stitch to create my necklace,
in part because I love how the colors play off each other
in the design.  The necklace and sea glass pendant work together
to create this dazzling summer look. 





I used non-tarnish silver plated wire to wrap the sea glass
and create the bail.  I prefer to use a simple wrap design
so that the natural beauty of the sea glass shines through.   




Next I turned my attention to this fabulous paua pendant. 





I had a hard time deciding whether to pick up
the shades of aqua, or teal or purple that shone so brilliantly in the sunlight.  And no matter what I tried, a necklace that focused on one color just looked out of place when next to this amazing pendant.



It was desperation, really, that sent me back to the bead shop
in search of something--anything--that would live up
to the beauty of the paua shell. 



After wandering through the entire store,
trying to find just the right shape, color and who knows what else
I was looking for by that point, I found myself
 back at the seed bead wall.  Helping one of the other customers
find the colors she needed for her necklace. 
(Go figure.) 



And that's when I really looked at my pendant. 
For the first time, I wasn't mesmerized by the play of colors
that changed each time I moved it in my hand. 
I noticed the black and grey that created the design
that showcased the amazing display of colors. 



And I remembered that if you want a color to pop,
you need to pair it with a neutral.  After that revelation,
it was easy to find the beads I needed to create
the dramatic necklace that would allow the paua pendant
to stand out but not overwhelm the rest of the design. 




I used matte black drop beads and 11/0 beads in a shade
called "Montana Blue Gold Luster."  The 11/0 beads have enough
of a hint of blue that it keeps the necklace
from being monochromatic but not enough color
that it draws your eye away from the pendant.




I guess confession is good for the soul...
I really didn't want to use the same stitch for both
necklaces.  But every other beading stitch I had learned
just didn't look right.  I even tried making a wire wrapped necklace
but it didn't have the flow that I wanted. 



The spiral rope stitch reminds me so much of the waves
rolling onto the beach that it seemed to be a perfect fit
for this necklace as well.  And since I just learned this stitch,
it seemed fitting to use my new skill for this challenge. 





So now I still had the paua chips and the beautiful toggle clasp
to incorporate into a design...and I'm getting worried
because time is running out.

When in doubt, go back to what you love, right? 
And I realized that I love charm bracelets...
and that a bracelet that had these beautiful paua chips dangling
off a simple chain would be something pretty amazing.   



I guess by now you've realized that I was designing these pieces for myself. 

(Especially once I realized that this toggle doesn't slip off when I wear it!)

And the best part was that I had just enough paua chips to make a pair of dangle earrings to complete my new jewelry set!



I'm so excited to be a part of this year's Bead Soup Blog Hop and can't wait to see what Cynthia has created with the pieces I sent her! 
You can visit her blog here

Be sure to check out as many blogs as you can...there are so many amazing and talented artists participating!  And don't forget that there are two more reveals this year to see what everyone else has created with their Bead Soup!



85 comments:

  1. Love your work, and the thought process behind it! Enjoy your new jewelry!

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  2. Gorgeous soup.I love every one of the pieces you made

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  3. Beautiful designs! I am so impressed by your seed bead weaving.

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    1. Thank you, Lisa! I'm just starting out on my seed bead weaving journey...loving every minute of it!

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  4. Very lovely, stunning pieces ! You're right, the neutrals just make the shell POP !

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    1. Thanks, Audrey! I'm learning that the journey is just as enjoyable as the destination!

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  5. A delightful blend of colours and flavours.Lovely Love and hugs Tanya

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  6. Oh man Cindy ... you killed it! I love every single piece, and your writing to take us on your journey with you! I am in awe of how you work with beach glass. I would never have thought of orange, but that is just perfect together! The paua shell focal is amazing. You are so right to use neutrals, and that spiral stitch does just flow like waves. What a gorgeous necklace! And I simply love how you used the paua chips. Great idea to start a charm bracelet... you could even add a few silver sea charms to boot! The toggle is one of those that isn't going to come off! I've used it in a few design and love it, and you've paired it perfectly. You used every piece ... well done!!!! So happy to have partnered with you. Best part of the hop is getting to know new artists :)

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    1. :) I was hoping you would like what I created! It was wonderful to be partnered with you (and I LOVE the helix necklace you created...next new stitch I'm teaching myself, I think)

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  7. You did a great job with all your soup! Love the orange drops in that first necklace! And you are totally spot on with the black in the second, it really made that focal pop. The good thing is, when you learn other stitches, you can simply swap out the pendant, and have more choices. :)

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    1. Thank you, Shirley! I appreciate the comments. Although I wanted to try to learn to make a beaded bail for the paua pendnat, I figured leaving it simple for now would make it easier to exchange later!

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  8. Awesome feast - you rocked the shells and the sea theme... Love the bracelet and earrings! I love how you incorporated spiral rope with your necklaces... your inspiration definitely led your fingers through the work. Love!

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  9. spiral rope is one of my favorite stitches also, I tend to use it when nothing else seems to work. love the wire wrapped beach glass pendant, great job of wrapping.

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  10. I think your colour decision with the Paua pendant was spot on. That colours really suits it :)

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  11. Wow! The pieces you received are so beautiful and you did them justice, setting them off beautifully. The clasp is gorgeous, no wonder you didn't want to hide it! Lovely work!

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  12. Wow!
    What a pile of beautiful!
    Lovely work!

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  13. Beautiful designs! Love them!

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  14. Beautiful beadwork. Love the charm bracelet.

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    1. Thank you, Linda! I've worn it once and gotten so many compliments :)

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  15. I think that you showcased that shell focal perfectly. And with the dark strand, you could wear it with just about anything. Fantastic soup. And bravo to you for getting everything done on time with Mother Nature throwing you one heck of a curve ball!

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    1. Thank you, Karyn! I appreciate the comments!

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  16. Wow...while I truly love everything you made, that black necklace is SUPERB!!! I an see it around my neck right now!!, you did a beautiful job on all of your pieces!

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  17. Having a problem with blogger...benn trying to leave a comment (i hope you don't get duplicates from me!). Anyway..everything is beautiful, but I am particularly drawn to your black necklace...truly superb!!! I would definetly wear it!

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  18. your jewelry is amazing! I love the black necklace the most though. You really put a lot of work into your pieces!with amazing results!

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  19. Ok, I confess, too. I would make every piece with apiral rope if I could get away with it, so I loved these. I feel like I had a beach vacation just sitting here in my easy chair. Thanks for this!

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  20. Great pieces - and the perfect color choice to go with the paua pendant:)

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  21. Thank you for sharing your thought process during your creative period. Love the paua necklace.

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  22. Absolutely gorgeous! I have sea glass but I stink at wrapping it! You did a marvelous job! And thanks for coming to my party!

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  23. Wonderful use of colors to highlight your focals....your brainstorm on the paua focal was brilliant. Lovely work.

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  24. I absolutely love these creations! They are so organic and serene looking! Reminds me of the beach! :)

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  25. I love these :) the oranges look fabulous with that brown seaglass, and you are so right in that pieces demand simple 'framing' to let their own beauty shine out :)

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  26. I absolutely love every single piece you made. You are by far one of my fav designers. You took me back to my visits to the beach with every single piece. GREAT job.

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  27. Beautiful! Just Beautiful! I love the orange with the beach glass and aren't you glad you took one more look at that focal. The blacks in the different finishes is perfect. Great job.

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  28. very beautiful! Nice pices well combined! Hugs, Doris

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  29. Lovely jewelry! And you did such a nice job with your soup! Have a great day ;)

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  30. I love those spiral necklaces and the paua earrings.

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  31. I have to say the black/blue necklace reminds me of the islands....... the chip earrings are fun too. I have never made something out of this spiral but have done a sample piece and have been thinking about doing one and you made both pieces look so lovely, I simply must give it a try!

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  32. Wow! Wow! Wow! I think my favorite is the orange. It really makes the sea glass "pop". Gorgeous work.

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  33. The orange necklace is my favorite! That is my color! Nice job!

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  34. I usually don't care for seed beads but that stitch and the larger beads just draw the eye. And my eye is definitely drawn to your shell necklace. Gorgeous work!

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  35. These are great! I really like the orange with the brown and he black really does allow the blues to pop :) Very well done!

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  36. Lovely Cindy! You're right, the black rope really does let the paua pendant stand out doesn't it!

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  37. Nice designs. The black with the paua shell was the perfect choice to make it stand out. Love the little charm bracelet.

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  38. Love the Paua earrings. Not revealing until next reveal. www.heavenlanecreations.com

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  39. You created some awesome pieces. I love your sence of design. Be blessed to be a blessing

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  40. Oh my gosh...Awesome use of the beaded spirals with the pendants, and the bracelet is just too much fun! Nice job!

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  41. Nice job on your soup ingredients. Really love the paua shell focal necklace!

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  42. As someone who is not usually a fan of orange, I find the shade of orange you chose for the brown sea glass quite mesmerizing. As well, the black and gray worked exceptionally well with the shell focal. Wonderful, wonderful work!!

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  43. Fabulous beadwork, I love your colour choices.

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  44. Great job, I love the earrings, They would be so fun to wear.

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  45. Ooh! I'm liking your wire wrapping on the beach glass. That sets it off beautifully. Lovely!

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  46. Love the paua pendant necklace! The bracelet's great too - and you managed to use the clasp :) Well done!

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  47. I am just starting to learn some new bead weaving patterns...your pieces are wonderful....really like the blue!

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  48. Hi Cindy,
    Wow I love your designs they are gorgeous. I really like the paua shell set and I do not blame you one bit for wanting that set for your self. You did a fantastic job of picking out the perfect seed beads for both necklaces. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!
    Therese

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  49. Very fun pieces! The brown sea glass one reminds me of a dress form... in a good way of course. I bet those earrings would make the sweetest sound

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  50. wow, such incredible and time consuming work! i love it all but i really like how you incorporated those pieces into the earrings :)

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  51. This is the first blog I have visited which showcases beadwork - what a fabulous piece you created with the amber colored sea glass - lovely work!

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  52. Love the use of drop beads, great job with all of your pieces.

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  53. That is one yummy soup you got to play with! I LOVE the wire wrapping you did with that brown sea glass! And you are quite the seed bead weaver!!! And I love the Paua shells!!! You did a fantastic job with everything! Love it all!!!

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  54. I like spiral ropes. What you did with the Paua shell pendant is awesome. You picked great colors. They set off the focal without overwhelming it.

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  55. Wow, love what you created. Your trips to the local bead store totally paid off. I love how the black necklace turned out and you are right about the colors totally popping.Great job

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  56. That paua shell pendant necklace is my favorite and the colors you used for the spiral were terrific! It's amazing! I am sure you are going to love wearing that whole set, though. What a success! How wonderful you still have so much beach glass to play with, too.

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  57. Love hearing about how you created your pieces! I just love the paua shell necklace and the beads you finally decided to use! Also great work on the bracelet!!!!

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  58. the paua chips bracelet and earrings are my favorites - I'm sure they look terrific on a sun light!!!

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  59. Love your beaded ropes! Lovely designs!

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  60. I really like the earrings that you created. They have a very contemporary look to them. Your sea glass wrap is awesome too.

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  61. love the bracelet and the earrings!
    ciao dall'Italia

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  62. Way to step out of your comfort zone. I would have never thought to put those orange beads with the brown glass. It looks fantastic. I love all the pieces you have come up with. I also really liked the bail on the two hole piece.

    Melissa Muir
    http://design.kcjewelbox.com

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  63. Your pieces are wonderful: I loved the way you used the ornage to pull out the beauty in that brown sea glass. And the set: it's perfect, I love the iridescence of the chips and focal. Beautiful!

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  64. How lovely! I think these are all great pieces. That Paua shell is really beautiful. Nature's designs are the best! I love the two holes at the top as well. Enjoy the day. Erin

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  65. Beautiful collection! Sorry I am late in commenting. Too much on my plate.

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  66. Both of your spiral necklaces are beautiful.... this too is one of my favorite stitches. I have never done it with drop beads, I love the look.
    Sonya

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